Dunkeswell swimmer raises thousands for charity in memory of his late dad

PUBLISHED: 11:00 15 March 2018 | UPDATED: 09:16 21 March 2018

Neil Brown from Dunkeswell.

Neil Brown from Dunkeswell.


A Dunkeswell man has swum almost 4,000 miles - raising thousands of pounds for charities in the process.

Neil Brown started swimming regularly when he was 28 after his mum suggested he took up a new form of exercise to keep fit.

What started as swimming lengths at his local pool in Honiton transformed into something of an obsession.

Neil said: “I keep a record of every single swimming session I do and log how far I have swum.

“This January I hit 3,714 miles, which is 237,744 lengths of the pool. It’s like swimming from Exeter to New York and then some.

“My preferred stroke is freestyle and I usually do 80 lengths in a single swimming session.”

Neil’s dad, Ken, died in 2012 – and was helped by end-of-life charity Hospiscare before his death.

The year after, Neil, 53, started raising money for charity from his swimming exploits – raising a total of £2,360 for six charities. He has raised more than £1,000 for Hospiscare alone.

He added: “Swimming is the best form of exercise you can do – it is a total body workout.

“My next goal is to reach 3,750 miles and then maybe aim to hit 4,000 miles after that.

“I keep my records all together so I know exactly how far I’ve gone and how close I am to my next target.

“I did a few miles in a pool at Pontins on holiday, but apart from that all my swimming has been at the Honiton pool.

“I used to go three to four times a week but I have eased off a bit now and only do one to two sessions weekly. My dad was so proud of my swimming, I know he would be really chuffed with how far I’ve swum.”

Hospiscare is a local adult hospice charity, providing high quality care and support to people with any type of terminal illness, and those close to them, in Exeter, Mid and East Devon.

The charity runs its Kings House day hospice in King Street, Honiton.

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